Premium desserts and pastries are on the upswing in San Francisco, with openings of stylish spots such as Craftsman & Wolves and Tout Sweet (inside Macy’s) within the past year. The latest to join this wave of sweet spots is b. patisserie by Belinda Leong.

Leong is a former pastry chef at Gary Danko and Manresa and partners with San Francisco Baking Institute founder Michel Suas to create an instant neighborhood success story in lower Pacific Heights. Since opening a couple of weeks ago, b. patisserie has been buzzing with many of its beautiful creations going from the prep station into people’s hands, spending maybe minutes behind the glass counters.

French café
b. patisserie has the feel of a modern French patisserie, with stylish lighting and marble countertops. While the place sells salads and sandwiches, most people are there for Leong’s delightful pastries and desserts. In the early days, most of the items have been selling out by early afternoon, so at least for now it’s smart to go before lunch to ensure you get a wide selection.

Some items to look out for when visiting include:

  • Kouign amann – Leong’s signature pastry has got to be the kouign amann, which is a Breton cake that’s similar to puff pastry folded into a circular cake. The layers of butter and sugar with crispy edges form a perfectly baked pastry. Leong offers a chocolate and fruit version, but only on the weekdays.
  • 10-hour apple tart – The 10 hours refer to the time it takes to make the apple confit that’s combined with almond streusel and pate brisee for a unique tart.
  • Any dessert – The light and refined delicacies are what you’d find at a restaurant, from pate a choux to mousse to millefeuille. Most of these need to be refrigerated, so eat it there (if you can find an open table) unless you plan to be home fairly soon. I tried the chocolate caramel toffee mousse that was a chocolate globe encasing the chocolate mousse with caramel center and toffee bits around the edges. It was quite special.

You can’t really go wrong with any items at b. patisserie. If only there were more shops around the area for you to walk off what you just ate.

b. patisserie, 2821 California St. (near Divisadero), San Francisco. PH: 415.440.1700. Open Tues.–Sat., 7 a.m.–7 p.m.; Sun., 8 a.m.–6 p.m., closed Monday. Facebook page.

Trying to make a decision looking at all the pastries and treats on display

Trying to make a decision looking at all the pastries and treats on display

10-hour apple tart with apple confit, almond streusel and pate brisee

10-hour apple tart with apple confit ($6.50), almond streusel and pate brisee

Lovely grande macaron with rose creme mousseline, raspberries, vanilla powder and rose petal

Lovely grande macaron ($6.50) with rose creme mousseline, raspberries, vanilla powder and rose petal

The open kitchen is busy these early days of b. patisserie's opening

Partners Michel Suas and Belinda Leong busy at work in the open kitchen.

This chocolate caramel toffee mousse ($6.50) caught my eye while waiting in line. Never saw anything like this before.

This chocolate caramel toffee mousse ($6.50) caught my eye while waiting in line. Never saw anything like this before.

Inside the chocolate caramel toffee mousse, a light mousse with toffee bits

Inside the chocolate caramel toffee mousse, a light mousse with toffee bits

Chocolate hazelnut croissants ($3.75)

Chocolate hazelnut croissants ($3.75)

Reflection of the cafe with a modern French patisserie feel

Reflection of the cafe with a modern French patisserie feel

Preparing more pastries

Preparing more pastries

 

7 Responses to What to Order at the New b. patisserie in San Francisco

  1. Carolyn Jung says:

    I can’t wait to check that place out. Belinda has always made the most amazing pastries. I’m so glad she’s finally got her own place to showcase them properly.

  2. Row says:

    Wow, that chocolate caramel toffee mouse is beautiful! Looks even better on the inside… very light and fluffy. Please have a kouign amann for me the next time you go. 🙂

    • Ben Ben says:

      LOL, Row, I already had the kouign amann. I bought it home after I ate the mousse at the cafe. (I also bought home a passion fruit bostock.) It was my first time eating a kouign amann, and I liked it, although I’m sure I had a lot of butter and sugar. I really want to try the one with fruit, but I have to wait till I have a day off to check it out on a weekday.

      • Row says:

        Man, SF has so many lovely bakeries! How was the bostock? I’m glad you liked the kouign amann. I’m also curious about the fruit version… it’s good to have a healthy-ish alternative to the traditional pastry. 🙂

        • Ben Ben says:

          The bostock is like a little tart and the filling was passion fruit. The pastry part was perfect, like all her other baked goods, but I thought the passion fruit flavor was really subtle. It was enjoyable with my afternoon cup of tea, but I think a lot of her fancier pastries have a lot more punch in flavor. … BTW, I like how you think adding fruit to pastry makes it a healthier option! LOL

  3. hungry dog says:

    My cousin was also telling me about this place, I have to stop by one day. Everything looks so elegant and yes,very French!

  4. Tara says:

    So great to stumble upon this post!! I am heading over there in the next two weeks due to all the hype it has been receiving and I cannot wait to try the famous kouign amann.